Deploy software package via GPO using DNS Alias (CName) - ERROR

Posted on 2007-07-31
Last Modified: 2008-06-24
I have setup DNS Aliasing (CName) on Windows Server 2003 SP1. The domain is, server name = dc, and the DNS Alias = After changing the DisableStrictNameChecking in registry, DNS alias works perfectly. I can browse to it \\, I can manually execute .msi packages from workstations, and problems using it with shares or mapped drives. I want to deploy a software package via GPO using the DNS Alias name when specifying the package. When creating the new package, you cannot browse the name, but you can type the \\FQDN (\\ on the comand line and the shares appear in the dialog box at which time you can browse through to the package and assign it with no problems. Let me also add at this point that I have deployed the same packages from this GPO and Server using the servers real name with no problems at all. All appears good at this point. I force a GP update on the workstation using gpupdate /force /boot. Just before login the packages are delivered and the message shows, "Installing ..... <package> ....". The messages disappear just as quickly as they appeared and the login prompt appears. When I check the event logs I find the following message:

Event Type:                 Error
Event Source:         Application Management
Event Category:      None
Event ID:                108
User:                NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM
Failed to apply changes to software installation settings.  Software changes could not be applied.  A previous log entry with details should exist.  The error was : The installation source for this product is not available.  Verify that the source exists and that you can access it.

I have added 'Everyone" with full rights to the share. I have even added "Local Service", "Network Service", and other local pointing accounts and it makes no difference. After I login on the workstation, I immediately browse to the \\central and the \\ and both are fully accessible and I can manually execute the package and install it with no problems. Workstation OS is Windows XP SP1 and SP2.

My questions are as follows:
1) Is it possible to deploy GPO using a DNS Alias (CName)?
2) Is there a way to make the DNS Alias appear in the list under 'My Network Places'?
3) Anyone seen this error and know how to resolve it?

Thanks for the help.
Question by:pbttech
    LVL 28

    Expert Comment

    The problem seems to go right back to finding the domain name this is why it is giving you the error "The installation source for this product is not available.  Verify that the source exists and that you can access it."

    Why not simply if the server exists on the network enter an "A name" record for the server and update the records run ipconfig /flushdns on the client machines then reattempt the deployment.
    LVL 30

    Expert Comment

    I wonder if you use .local ie fqdn=demo.local as using the .com address would need to go to the root server for the .com address using .local effectively uses the server for the root server dns

    Author Comment

    Let me explain the initial problem further which may help with the solution. There are (3) sites, different geographic locations, each with a Windows Server 2003 DC in the same domain talking over a WAN connection. I have an application to deploy that utilizes Microsoft ADAM to tie into AD. I created a single OU with the GPO assigned originally based on the server share under SYSVOL. Deployment went perfect everywhere no problems. When a laptop from Site C went to Site A or Site B the software reinstalled. When the laptop went back to Site C it reinstalled again. I asked for suggestions from colleges and they reported that DNS Aliasing would resolve the issue, but I am finding out that it will not.
    LVL 4

    Expert Comment

    This is not necessarily a DNS issue.  To prepare for a network based (GPO) installation you need to perform an administrative installation to the share you'll be running the network installation from.  An administrative install extracts the source files to the netork share and creates a new msi file that points to the network location instead of the default location (user profile temp folder).  When deploying software via GPO you first perform an administrative install to a network share then us the new msi file for the GPO.
    LVL 4

    Expert Comment

    I've got to learn to hit refresh before I submit.  Feel free to ignore me.

    Author Comment

    I was able to resolve this issue using a different solution than DNS Aliasing. It turns out that DNS Aliasing does not work with GPO and multiple servers. The solution was to use Domain Shares instead of Server Shares and the problem did not occurr. Thanks for the replies on this guys.
    LVL 1

    Accepted Solution

    PAQed with points refunded (500)

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